Up From The Sea
Thyssenkrupp escalators improve beach access at Canary Islands resort area.
The municipal government of Las Palmas de Gran Canaria, seeking to bridge a gap on the city’s seafront promenade, Paseo de Las Canteras — a broad, paved walkway along Playa de las Canteras (Las Canteras Beach) — turned to thyssenkrupp Elevadores, SLU, to install four escalators in an area of demanding environmental conditions.
La Cicer is an emblematic building on Las Canteras Beach, a shoreline in Las Palmas, the capital of Gran Canaria, Canary Islands. In 1928, a power plant was opened in La Cicer on a 16,000-m2 plot on the sea edge. In the latter part of the 1960s, the power plant began cooling its turbines with sea water, which was recycled back to the sea. The site of the warm water outfall became a popular bathing spot. The electric facility changed ownership in 1970, and its use as a power plant was gradually phased out, but the beach remained popular with local residents and tourists.
To improve the experience for visitors, the Las Palmas government undertook construction of the Paseo de Las Canteras seafront promenade in the 1990s. Upon its opening, it was considered a great achievement for the city. The 3.1-km-long promenade connects La Puntilla Beach with the El Rincón area of Las Palmas. The last part of the promenade to be completed is the stretch where La Cicer is located.
The city had opened a sports center at the La Cicer plot and wanted to reconfigure the remaining space along the seafront at the level of the Paseo de las Canteras and the beach below. The simultaneous demolition of some of the existing buildings at the site was undertaken during construction of the sports building.
The city wished to improve pedestrian access to the beach, which lies below the promenade. thyssenkrupp Elevadores was contracted for the job with the understanding that the proposal had to achieve a double objective: to give continuity to the Paseo and accomplish a functional passage for the city/sea meeting surface this area deserved.
The front of the sports facility was at a lower level than the Paseo, around 6 m, while the level of the Paseo facing Pizarro street is about 8 m and, at the other end, the connection with California Street, about 10 m. This project aimed to connect the two sections of the promenade as smoothly as possible, in addition to achieving a large opening to the sea in front of the building at the lower level, creating a large, square cross-section to connect the space in front of the building with the one on the beach.
At the end of California Street, a layout of escalators was installed to augment the two flights of stairs that start from the two different levels of the square. Given its location on the walkway next to the sea, the technical specifications of the stairs were very demanding to ensure good performance in a highly corrosive saline environment.
The project comprises the supply, installation and commissioning of two Tugela escalators accessing a height of 1.5 m, and another two accessing 3.54 m, manufactured by thyssenkrupp Norte. The technical specifications of the project contemplated the demanding conditions to which the mechanical corridors were to be exposed and, thus, included:
- Sea weather resistance.
- Stainless-steel anticorrosion AISI 316 components
- An energy-saving system with automatic start by radar and frequency variator
- LED lighting under the handrail
- User-detection system via photocells inserted along the entire base that allows remote start and stop
- A programmable logic controller with remote monitoring and remote-control system using the latest-generation TKNview system, which allows control and monitoring of the escalators through a PC, tablet or mobile phone.
The main contractor on the project was Canary Islands construction company Satocan, and architectural services were provided by TDA Arquitectura y Urbanism 2002 SLP of Barcelona.
The flexibility and short delivery times of thyssenkrupp Norte and the experience and knowledge of the project and stair assembly team of thyssenkrupp Elevadores made this project a success, fulfilling the client’s expectations. The project was completed in September 2018.
The project team was composed of Luis Miguel García Cuenca (project/assembly manager) and Antonio Cabezos Magariño (key account manager).